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Book of the Week: A Pick by Martin Parr

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Martin Parr Photographer Martin Parr selects i by Eamonn Doyle as photo-eye Book of the Week.

i. By Eamonn Doyle.
D1, 2014.
This week's book of the week selection comes from photographer and photobook historian Martin Parr. A few weeks ago Parr got in touch with us to share Eamonn Doyle's i, and agreed to let us share it with you as Book of the Week.

"Street photography is one of the most difficult genres to find a new vision within. From time to time a photographer finds a voice and makes an original contribution to this development, and often a book celebrates that achievement. I am thinking of the likes of Bruce Gilden's Facing New York and Philip-Lorca diCorcia's MOMA book. So when this book by Eamonn Doyle arrived at my doorstep I was quite taken aback. This unknown photographer had shot on the streets of Dublin, often from behind the subjects, and produced a most lyrical set of photographs and a wonderful book. Self-published, with an edition of 750, it has to be one of this year's sleepers as this compelling contribution to street photography makes its mark."—Martin Parr

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i. By Eamonn Doyle. D1, 2014.
i. By Eamonn Doyle. D1, 2014.

Martin Parr is a photographer, a curator and editor. Volume 3 of The Photobook, A History was published last month and he is currently working on a book about the history of Chinese photobooks.


  1. With all due respect to Eamonn Doyle, as "street photography is one of the most difficult genres," as Parr says, the Magnum photographer is off the mark with his review. Of course, I say that without handling the book myself. But, if I may be so bold, if the genre is so challenging as Parr asserts, how do photos of backs and rather simple framing elevate street photography?

    These kinds of photographs of "behind the backs"have been around for a very long time. Even before photography, there were paintings of backs, such as with " Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog," by Caspar David Friedrich. I can name several photographs off the top of my head who have created similar works. What do we gain by piecing them together into typography.

    If we are trying to achieve a new vision, I don't see how this work accomplishes that. Perhaps what Parr enjoys are the lyrical aspects of a repeating tapping the same chord on a piano? It gets old, doesn't it?
    Perhaps it's the textile nature of the book itself, which I can't possibly now from my online view. Even so, that tangible aspect which we all desire from books and prints doesn't elevate street photography, per se. If anything, that forwards to a discussion about bookmaking. Not ideas.

    Sorry Martin Parr. I just don't see this as the evolution to what should be celebrated.

  2. Excellent choice Mr Parr

    I love these glimpses from behind. its almost looking back into the history of Dublin. These old heads will soon be gone from the streets of Dublin but I will definitely have at least one hanging on my wall.